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Old 15th January 2013, 18:19   #136
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Default Re: ARTICLE: Safe Driving on Indian Highways & Ghats

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Originally Posted by Santoshbhat View Post

At 90 degrees one will not be able to see the body of the car. How is one supposed to make out how close or far the object is from the car? I am sure I won't be able to drive with such a view. I don't think many car mirrors (esp the internally adjustable types) will swivel out so far in the first place.
Exactly the reason why I could not adapt to that style, at least on city roads. Perhaps on highway drives it may be useful, as mobikes don't travel too close to the rear of cars in such places.

Perhaps that recommendation is only for US roads, where two-wheelers do not tailgate other vehicles on city roads.
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Old 15th January 2013, 21:27   #137
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Originally Posted by vnabhi View Post

Exactly the reason why I could not adapt to that style, at least on city roads. Perhaps on highway drives it may be useful, as mobikes don't travel too close to the rear of cars in such places.

Perhaps that recommendation is only for US roads, where two-wheelers do not tailgate other vehicles on city roads.
I haven't read through the PDF, but highway driving in the USA is very different to Indian roads. Even though some of our modern highways resemble those abroad, the nature of driving is quite different.
Most folks in USA use cruise control and at times speed difference between the faster car behind and slower car in front can be minimal e.g. 1, 2 MPH. In such cases I've noticed that lots of drivers do not speed up to overtake quickly. Instead, they shift to next lane and slowly overtake, sometimes not increasing their speed at all and taking a couple of miles to get ahead! So they end up spending a lot of time in the traditional mirrors blind spot. So looking over the shoulder at adjacent lanes is always a good idea. Personally I just complete overtakes as quick as possible in India and abroad.
This scenario is improbable on our highways.
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Old 16th January 2013, 11:11   #138
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Default Re: ARTICLE: Safe Driving on Indian Highways & Ghats

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Originally Posted by vnabhi View Post
Well, the diagrams are pretty illustrative, so how can I or anybody give a better explanation?

I'll give this a shot in my next highway drive, as it facilitates a better coverage of what is behind me. For city drives, I prefer the method I've explained in my earlier post.
Unfortunately I found the Ford's digram showing 4 narrow slits of blind-spots mis-leading. So just wanted to understand your interpretation of the those digrams.

The field-of-view of a mirror does not change. So by adjusting the mirror to 90 degrees, we are moving the field of view away from the car's side. The definitely helps to see a additional lane in a multi-lane highway. BUT, it also creates a NEW blind-spot just next to the side of your car. Since the field-of-view of the mirror does not change, its safe to assume that if you are able to see one additional car, you are missing one existing car (which is in fact closer). So I doubt Ford's narrow-blind-spot claim.

As you have correctly pointed out, in Indian context, where people have no sense of leaving a safe distance between cars, a car/bike in the NEW blind-spot just by the side of your car is more dangerous when you weigh the advantage of seeing an additional lane.

Last edited by SDP : 16th January 2013 at 11:27.
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Old 16th January 2013, 12:15   #139
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Default Re: ARTICLE: Safe Driving on Indian Highways & Ghats

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Can someone help me here. I have read in multiple online blogs / forums about driving in neutral when approaching known stop / tollbooth etc. Why is it dangerous to be in neutral gear when you know the stop is -- lets say 300 mtrs away; and you can reduce the speed gradually?



I have made it a practice - especially during night driving - to keep safe distance behind the lead car. And thank him when he stops or I overtake.

Thank you GTO for the elaborate thread. You've covered everything that was coming to my mind as I started reading it
Same here.. I even started a thread to discuss about the same. We use to call it as pilot car which clears traffic and guides us to the destination. It is really helpful in the night drive when the visibility is not the same as day. But as stated in the thread, as the speed increases your distance between the pilot car has to increase. It is advisable to be in the other lane so you dont throw the lights into his car and also helps during emergency braking.

More importantly, if he increases his speed then dont try to match up with him, the moment you try to keep up with him, you lose your control.
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Old 16th January 2013, 17:16   #140
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Default Re: ARTICLE: Safe Driving on Indian Highways & Ghats

Some random points (which may or may not have been mentioned in other replies!):
Pre-trip:
/ Car documentation: Insurance policy copy, RC copy, service calls numbers, owners manual
/ Tools: Tyre change kit, spanners, allen keys, +/-drivers, duct tape, jump cable, digital voltmeter/multimeter, torch
/ Spares: fuses, coolant, engine oil
/ Recent service: depending on length of trip and at least 2-3 days of driving after

24 hours prior:
/ first aid kit: esp to manage cuts/ lacerations, splint/ immobilisation. I also keep a neck brace in the vehicle. My doctor is on speed dial.
/ I think I should have a sticker, in Hindi/English on the vehicle identifying emergency contact numbers
/ tyres/stepney: tread, air check (I also cross check with a second pump-wallah, and I used to have a pressure gauge once), loosening of nuts, re-tightening
/ lights: all checked incl hi-beam, flashers, fogs, etc
/ fuel: top-up, log set-up
/ check: oil, washer fluid, brake fluid, general leaks in engine compartment, visual check of car, battery voltage/SG, drips below car
/ glass cleaning for good visibility, esp for night driving
/ listen to the car: for noise, strain, leaks, rattles, drag towards any one side, uneven tyre wear

Day of trip:
/ driving position for comfort, all strapped in
/ 10-15 mins break every two hours in tough driving conditions, otherwise 20 mins every 3-4 hours. Fatigue is the single largest contributor to accidents.
/ Kids to be controlled: No moving around in the vehicle, they are strapped in, hence have lots of entertainment/distractions and 1 parent next to them.
/ Baggage also strapped/stowed well, no loose articles moving about capable of coming loose in the inside of the vehicle
/ short Sri-Ganesh, or equivalent, to your personal God!
/ One time I had a premonition 2 hours before departure for Chail (at about 4 am), and I called off the trip. I had a tyre sidewall collapse 2 days/ 100 kms later. Trust your gut.
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Old 28th January 2013, 12:47   #141
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Default Re: ARTICLE: Safe Driving on Indian Highways & Ghats

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Originally Posted by Rehaan View Post
+


In short : NEVER coast in neutral. It negates engine braking, gives you less control over the car, and even uses more fuel.

Check out these two threads on the topic:

1) http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/techni...ing-right.html (Shifting to Neutral or Pressing the Clutch when Braking - Is this right?)

2) http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/techni...ar-brakes.html (The best way to use the clutch, gear and brakes)

Thank you Parsh and Rehaan for clarifying. I was wondering how useful and safe this would be.
I could actually try this in recent highway trip. Here is what my first time experience
1. I was nearing Khalapur toll booth in Mum-Pun express way from Pune side
2. I was about 200 mtrs away and about 25kmph in left lane with only two cars waiting at the booth and 1 more behind me in right most lane
3. Put in neutral and shifted to left lane.
4. Coursed on till I reached the speed braker before the toll collection window; and then shifted back to first due to lack of momentum.


Here is what I felt when I was doint this "stunt" and after
1. I was closing in on the tollbooth only in neutral speed decreasing from initial 25kmph to zero as I reached nearer
2. Had close to zero control on the car as Rehaan and Parsh had put as it was a free flowing thing.
3. This is plain risky. Saving two more drops of fuel (as stated in some of the sites I googled for this) against risk it involves - makes it last time.

Even when you know you are supposed to stop at a tollbooth etc. NEVER attempt this.
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Old 1st February 2013, 14:49   #142
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Default Re: ARTICLE: Safe Driving on Indian Highways & Ghats

Superb post GTO. Thank you!

Though I have been driving for nearly 30 years, I found this post extremely informative and useful. I am very particular about safety in the car whilst driving. So this has struck a chord with me.

The thread is a must read for new and experienced drivers alike.
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Old 14th February 2013, 13:12   #143
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Awesome effort GTO. You simply don't stop to amaze us.

Was it that I had missed it or was it wilfully avoided --> the mention Of using cell phones while driving. It's a no brainer anyway, just like the absence of the mention of drunken driving.

Great article. Bravo!!
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Old 14th February 2013, 17:27   #144
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Default Re: ARTICLE: Safe Driving on Indian Highways & Ghats

Superb article GTO, like the way each and every point is adequately captured and explained.

Recently on my way back from kalpetta, I was feeling sleepy on the last leg just after mysore. Pulled up into an Adigas, took some rest, had two cups of coffee before proceeding ahead.

Some tips below for highway travel

Keep water bottles in all four doors ( if provisioned) so that co - passengers can quench themselves without much effort.

Load all your favourite songs on usb or cd so that there is not much temptation to change the songs. Ask your co - passengers to refrain from frequent changes as this tends to distract attention.

When you refuel during your course of the journey, check tyre pressure also.

Carry some empty plastic bags for motion sickness. It is very common when you drive on the ghat sections

Carry old newspapers for any cleaning activity required in the car.

Carry hand sanitizers ( particularly useful when you use the public loos)

Ask co- passengers to remove footwear in the car so that the pressure on the feet is released especially during long travels

Keep your phone on silent so that the distraction is reduced and you could always return any calls or answer any URGENT mails at the next pitstop.

Use the child lock facility on the right side rear door so that nobody opens the door onto traffic irrespective on what

Carry atleast two umbrellas in the car ( atleast one inside ) for those sudden outpours.

Carry a torch and always keep the boot light in on position.

Explain the route to your co passengers and keep them aware on the current location. helps a lot in case of any emergencies.

If you have passed over a large pothole or speed breaker at high speed and there is a huge noise. Pull the car to the side and check for any damages.

Carry a car mobile charger. (trust me helps a lot if your using the GPS on your mobile).


"Remember you life is more precious than your ego" - DRIVE SAFE
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Old 2nd March 2013, 15:36   #145
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Default Re: ARTICLE: Safe Driving on Indian Highways & Ghats

I've seen a mistake most people do in toll booths (any traffic jam for that matter) while moving along in a long queue. Usually seen this more with diesel cars; they move off in first gear and then modulate the crawling speed by using the brakes. The best method to protect the clutch and drivetrain is to dis-engage the clutch and crawl in neutral and then use the brakes if need be! Due to this mistake, brake pads wear out quickly as they have to fight against the torque of the engine. The clutch plate also takes a toll.

I've also noticed this when drivers reverse their cars. They release the clutch fully and use the brakes to modulate the speed. Premature brake fade is the result, not to mention clutch plate abuse. Instead, dis-engage the clutch (have it pressed) and then use the brakes. It'll do its job without fighting the engine torque.

Last edited by swiftdiesel : 2nd March 2013 at 15:38.
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Old 14th March 2013, 14:33   #146
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Default Re: ARTICLE: Safe Driving on Indian Highways & Ghats

Thanks GTO for compilation of this awesome thread.

If only, majority road users followed this thread, we would not have lost Lacs of our country men in road accidents every year.

I have just one thing to add to the discussion here. The point about keeping a safe distance from vehicle ahead cannot be over emphasized. I have seen people driving dangerously close to each other on highways even at speeds north of 100 kmph (various such instances on Mumbai-Pune Expressway). If there is an emergency braking situations, all such vehicles will end up in a pile on top of each other. I have heard many such instances where 'expert' / over-confident drivers have got into an accident due to this. Thankfully, I never had to witness one.

Last edited by Gotham_City : 14th March 2013 at 14:49.
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Old 20th April 2013, 05:58   #147
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Default Re: ARTICLE: Safe Driving on Indian Highways & Ghats

Below is an article on a techie who ended up paying with his life for stopping on the highway for rest at a unsafe spot.

http://www.bangaloremirror.com/artic...s-friends.html
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Old 20th April 2013, 06:37   #148
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PC77 View Post
Below is an article on a techie who ended up paying with his life for stopping on the highway for rest at a unsafe spot.

http://www.bangaloremirror.com/artic...s-friends.html
This is absolutely frightening in its brutality.
What has India become?
Poor Prabhu. Tears come into my eyes reading about this.
The saddest thing is that photo of the three boys taken in happier times...now one of their lives is brutally snuffed out by filthy scum criminals.
As common tax paying people is it not our basic right that the government machinery at least provides safety and justice?
What difference is there between India now in 2012 and the Wild West of America in the 1800's where highwaymen and bandits and robbers were rife?

Avoid night driving. Never stop on the highways and pull over in lonely places to take rest except in regular establishments and coffee places etc.
Try to drive in convoy with friends as there is always greater safety in numbers.
If possible dont drive alone. Carry pepper spray and other base level defensive equipment if possible.

Last edited by shankar.balan : 20th April 2013 at 06:41.
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Old 20th April 2013, 07:42   #149
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Default Re: ARTICLE: Safe Driving on Indian Highways & Ghats

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Originally Posted by PC77 View Post
Below is an article on a techie who ended up paying with his life for stopping on the highway for rest at a unsafe spot.
Poor Prabhu. may his soul rest in peace. (Though I wish his soul to take care of Kasim and Johnny, which I know is quite impossible; the brutality committed by them for a few bucks is unpardonable)
The mind to grab quick money for a lavish style and the fad to mobikes and mobiles are driving many to life of crimes. Mobikes and mobiles.
The pity is the apathy shown by the Police and would have got their share of the pie for sure. How dare Kasim, to drive around in the victim's car after the heinous act.

Last edited by rajeev k : 20th April 2013 at 07:48.
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Old 21st April 2013, 15:05   #150
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swiftdiesel
I've seen a mistake most people do in toll booths (any traffic jam for that matter) while moving along in a long queue. Usually seen this more with diesel cars; they move off in first gear and then modulate the crawling speed by using the brakes. The best method to protect the clutch and drivetrain is to dis-engage the clutch and crawl in neutral and then use the brakes if need be! Due to this mistake, brake pads wear out quickly as they have to fight against the torque of the engine. The clutch plate also takes a toll.

I've also noticed this when drivers reverse their cars. They release the clutch fully and use the brakes to modulate the speed. Premature brake fade is the result, not to mention clutch plate abuse. Instead, dis-engage the clutch (have it pressed) and then use the brakes. It'll do its job without fighting the engine torque.
Is there any scientific basis for this advice? Releasing the clutch fully and using the brakes to slow down seems to be the correct way of doing things. Brakes are meant to be used when needed.
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